November 03, 2006

BG's Paris Diary Week 5

Wow it feels like the weekends- besides that tiny little thing I have tomorrow that involves getting up at 7.30am in the morning called class. Anyways, so this week I went to two places I normally wouldn't go if I were here as a tourist.

This weekend, I went to the Salon du Chocolat, which is basically the chocolate exhibition where chocolate houses all around the world gather in one big room with little booths and give out samples. It was awesome. We just walked around for 2 hours and stuffed ourselves full with samples. My favourite one was a booth near the front called De Chocolat Neuville (shown above center). It was delicious. Apart from the sampling, there were also lots of demonstrations of people carving chocolate (above right), making brownies and shaping chocolates.

Then there was the show. According to the schedule it is suppose to be a chocolate fashion show, but since I had no idea what the mc was saying in French, it could also very well be the ms chocolat contest I was trying to watch. I didn't get a really good look at the clothes because it was so crowded that I could barely see the stage. But judging from the pictures, the clothes don't look like chocolate. . . . so I don't know. But anyway, it was still a great experience and I highly recommend it to everyone who happens to be around the city the chocolate show is going to be at. Their next stop I believe is New York!

Then on Wednesday the French holiday, we took a 1.5hour train ride to the town (or is it a city?) of Reims, Champagne. We visited the absolutely amazing Cathedrale Notre Dame de Reims- this picture does not do it justice. At the height of gothic architecture, it is fabulously intricate and elongated. I just studied this cathedral last year in class, so it was even more cool seeing it in real life.

And of course, one cannot go to the Champagne region and not drink champagne right? We visited the Piper Heidsieck Champagne House (it was the closes on the map!) and went on their tour + wine tasting package for only 8euros. The tour was interesting. . it involved us sitting in an automatic car touring the underground cellar where they explained the process of champagne making with demonstrated by cement grapes, hands and people on the way, which was kind of freaky. That place would make the perfect setting of a horror movie. Afterwards we sat in the bar area and had our champagne though, which was nice. So yes, this is a must go if you're ever have the time.

To end with a piece of random knowledge, did you know that champagne cannot be called champagne unless it is made in the Champagne region of France? Any other champagne made in the world can only be called sparkling wine!

14 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

oh that's so awesome! yes i believe that is a chocolate fashion show... and the dresses are made from chocolate. either last year or the year before, austin from project runway designed a dress for this show :)

11/03/2006 12:46 PM  
Blogger Q said...

How classy. Digging the corpse look two posts down.

11/03/2006 12:49 PM  
Anonymous OceanStarWar said...

Can you provide a simple map, showing the position Remis, from Paris?

11/03/2006 1:08 PM  
Anonymous Henna said...

Yup, that's the case for all things French, not just Champagne. Brie must be made in France, Camembert, etc. Even to call a fashion house Couture, it must be made in France and employ people IN France.

11/03/2006 1:09 PM  
Blogger EuropeanTop said...

Hello and thanks for the opportunity to read and post on your blog.

I’ve just posted an article related to travel tips for seniors on my blog and I thought maybe you’d be interested in reading it. Here is short preview of some of the areas I covered:

- Prefer a backpack on wheels instead of a suitcase, you could pull it behind you when your back hurts or you are exhausted.
- Consider checking your bag in with the airlines, because it would become an unnecessary burden to be dragged all over the airport or the city if you are going to have a short visit.
- You could stay outside the city, in a hostel maybe, because it is cheaper, less crowded and the air is much fresher, but you have to walk or use the transport more, to get in the city or to the station.
- Most museums, some concert halls, railways, airlines, bus lines, ferry and shipping lines have a discount policy for seniors.
- Electronic devices are useful but sometimes they can give you a lot of headaches. You could help yourself with a micro-tape recorder to record your notes. It would be easier than to write and you would put them down on paper later, to share your notes with your family.
- If you bring a camera with you to keep the beautiful images alive along the time then make sure you know how to handle it or you might fail to record them not only on that camera but also in your eyes.

For more resources on travelling to Europe you are welcome to visit my blog, where you can also get acces to some excellent maps of Rome and maps of Berlin, together with information on hotels and restaurants.

Best regards,

Michael R.

11/03/2006 7:29 PM  
Anonymous Clar said...

Ookay we all saw Wayne's World (re the champagne fact).

11/03/2006 10:15 PM  
Blogger Loreen said...

You have to love France. Went to Champagne last July for a friend's birthday. Stayed in a Chateau and visited Piper, Veuve, Moet, Mumm & Pommery. Also visited Reims. Photos here if you are interested...

11/03/2006 10:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ooo, you came to Reims!! (I live there so that is the reason for my excitement). You are very right, those photos do not do the cathedrale justice, it is at it's best in winter at nightime really. When it snows and is all lit up it is absolutely beautiful. Hardly anyone comes to see it then though, ah well, it's still lovely the rest of the year.

11/04/2006 6:44 AM  
Blogger Barneys Girl said...

Loreen: Your stay in champagne sounds awesome. I would've loved to visit Moet, since it IS a big part of LVMH. lol. Was it far from the trainstation? We went to Piper because it was the closest we could walk to according to the map.

anon1044: That sounds beautiful! Is the cathedrale opened at night?

11/05/2006 12:16 AM  
Blogger Loreen said...

We actually rented a car since that was the easiest way we could get around (our whole trip was dedicated to Champagne tours). Otherwise, it definitely would have been hard to visit them all!

11/05/2006 9:22 AM  
Blogger TasteTV : Life Never Tasted So good said...

If you want to see some unique fashion, see the TasteTV.com video highlights from the Los Angeles "Dressed to Kilt" event during Fashion Week, go to:

http://link.brightcove.com/services/link/bcpid70364462/bclid138226409/ (from Kevin at TasteTV.com, http://www.TasteTV.com)

11/06/2006 8:01 AM  
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